Tonight, the remaining 20 cheftestants on Season 5 of Master Chef are dropped off in the Mojave desert for their first team challenge. (Spoiler Alerts: Season 5, Episode 3′s winners and losers will be announced in this post.)
Each team must prep a protein, a side, and a sauce to go with that protein. They can choose a double-cut pork chop, chicken, or steak. They will get two hours to prep, and another two to serve 500 U.S. service men and women.
Francis B has earned an advantage from last week’s win and is able to select his red team: Cutter, Tyler, Victoria, Francis L, Willie, Elizabeth, Kira, Ahran, Christine.
The rest are the blue team, captain’ed by Daniel.
The red team takes the pork chop. Daniel and the blue team opts for chicken and bbq sauce, over Leslie’s vocal objections. Both teams inexplicably reject the steak in favor of Proteins That Can Kill, if undercooked.
Unsurprisingly, the blue team gets off on the wrong foot with undercooked chicken which Gordon Ramsay promptly proclaims “more dangerous than the enemy.”
Not so fast, Red Team. Their mac and cheese is separating, and is rejected in favor of a slaw that must be hand grated. Also: their pork is raw in the center, though “everyone who got pork, loved it.” Ramsay forces them to go back and butterfly their pork chops. Despite several empty red plates when the pork chops aren’t all ready on time, the red team wins in a landslide (with 329 votes).
The red team is safe from elimination, while the blue team must advance to the pressure test. (Daniel, as team captain, gets to pick three cheftestant colleagues who can remain safe; he sends Christian, Gordon, and Dan Wu to the balcony.)
The battle is… blueberry pie. (What? This isn’t America’s Next Great Baker.)
Stefani admits she’s never made a blueberry pie before, while Jaimee has a blueberry pie tattooed on her neck (presumably complementing the KitchenAid tattooed on her thigh, which she showed off in the season premiere).
Jordan’s pie is “sloppy” and has raw flour in it – a pet peeve of Joe Bastianich. Courtney’s pie with Myer lemon zest is “delicious”; Leslie’s is “awesome… like an apple pie and blueberry pie crashed,” (Daniel makes jokes about Leslie’s age – “he probably knew Betty Crocker.”) Daniel has “one foot out the door” for his “falling apart” pastry. Elise is “horribly embarrassed” and in tears.
But it is Stephani who is sent home for what Ramsay characterizes as “a combination that would never work – pecans in a blueberry pie.” (Everyone’s so disappointed in her, you’d think she put anchovies in the pie.)
MasterChef airs on Fox on Mondays; check local listings, and tune in here for future recaps.
MasterChef Season 5, 2014 Recaps